All Hallow’s Eve

Winter has warned us it is coming soon. I revved up the little heater last night and got a bit toasty and had to turn it down. Both shelves in the L/D/B room are now up with some stuff on them. They are very strong. We glued two sheets of 1/4″ ply together because one sheet had been stained & polyed. That gave is 1/2 ” .Then we put braces on the walls where the ribs of the vehicle are. We screwed every thing together. We even put some twine around so that when the glue set it would be in the correct place. We made a stripe for the front from 1×2 pieces with uprights at 17″ intervals. What is left to do: 1) screw the uprights to the ceiling, 2) cut and sew the ties that will go between the uprights so that stuff stays on the shelves and 3) screw in place the end pieces. This should not take much time.

Also, we have begun work on the microwave space. We found an older 3/4″ ply board in the shed. It had beautiful grain so we cut it to size and put 2 (some times 3) coats of poly on it. We put braces up also; one at the back and 2 from the side walls – pantry and office. This should keep it in place and at the correct height.

Tomorrow, I plan to go to Lowe’s to get some LED lights, screws and square dowels. I am finding the windows a bit drafty. So, I will make some winter window covers from a former bathrobe. This should do the trick.

More later. Grand Maverick…

New friend

After church today several of us went out to eat. We visited over pizza. The husband, John, works on the weekends at Lowes in the electric department. He knows a lot about LED lights which is one of the next things to put in the L/D/B room. especially he knows about LED rope lights with dimmers. What a find.
More later. Grand Maverick.

Windows in the bedroom/living room/dining room

The space is small. Each inch has to perform several functions. That is what the 69 1/2 inches x 72 inches x 63 inches is doing. The curtains are smart. I made them from an old lace curtain for the space next to the window. I recycled a piece of material that I have had over the years. It has been 1) curtains and bedspreads in a regular house, 2) pillow cases, 3) a runner for a dresser, 4) binding for a comforter, 5) etc. I made two comforters for the “twin” beds from a comforter that started out life as a King size comforter then a Queen size. It is green on one side and plaid on the other. The pink/rose paisley design of the wayward material makes a binding that goes well on the spread.

Today we are working on the shelfs that are to be installed over the beds. This should give me considerable more storage space. The underside is Pickled Oak the same as the ceiling with the top side being painted Plum Red. Red is the accent color for the room. The bed legs are red.

My plan is to put some mirrors on the walls to make the room appear to be much larger that it really is. We shall see how close I come to this.

My computer is still in my friend’s house and not in the RV. When I can get things cleared out and in much bigger order with the computer in its new office I will try to put some pictures on this blog.

More later. Grand Maverick.

On Again

Sorry about the 6 week break. Much had happened during that time. I left WI on October 1 heading south (well mostly south). I picked up my niece near Joliet, IL. It was nice having company and a second driver. We headed to Athens, AL thinking that we would drive straight through. However, shortly into KY we pulled over for some shut-eye.

We stopped at a Love’s Truck stop; took a potty break; locked the van doors and hit the bed. It was nice to have your own bed and not to have to look for a motel.

About 5 am we woke up and hit the road again. My hope was to arrive in Athens in time for a tai-chi class. We were on schedule until we ran into the traffic in Nashville.. Opps.Instead of a 9:15 arrival we made it at 10:15. We received a very warm welcome. I did not get to attend a class but got some more instructions. With practice I will get my 24 form yet.

Thursday afternoon was a day for catching up on some business about town.
Friday was a day for preparation for the Estate Sale which went well.
Saturday the sale started 11:am. Every thing sold including the house and the 46 guns.
Sunday was church day and visiting with church friends. This makes 4 days sleeping on the beds in the van. So far the design hold up to its potential. One fifteen Sunday afternoon we hit the road again going westward this time. We arrived in Searcy, AR about 10 pm. Again sleeping in the van which is becoming an RV.

Monday morning it was westward again, heading for Wolf City, TX. It looks more like a village than a city. We stopped for a short visit in Sulphur Springs to visit with my sister/Becky’s mother. David, my nephew and Becky’s brother has a guest room so Becky and I shared a bed. David add this room with its bath to his house so that their mother could have her own room when she was living with him and his son. She stayed with David and Michael until she had to go to the nursing home.

Tuesday was mostly spent visiting with my sister. Becky and I sat on the porch of the nursing home enjoying the wonderful weather. The sun was shining. The breeze was gentle. Becky and I think that she recognized Becky for a few short minutes.

Wednesday was another visit with Sis. The same situation. The weather was still beautiful which made visiting more pleasant. Northwest Texas is begining to look like Fall; less green with more brown. David and Michael took Becky and I out to a Chinese restaurant. This makes night in a genuine bed. We slept well.

Thursday began another travel day. We started in TX 11 taking up I-30 at Sulphur Springs headed through Little Rock, AR to Searcy, AR. Becky did most of the driving which was very helpful.

Friday afternoon we headed the van down AR67/167 to Little Rock to the bus station. We arrived early because we were not sure exactly the location of the station. We did have to search a bit before we found it. I was located on the feeder road and we could have pulled directly into it instead of turning on Roosevelt. We sat for about an hour people watching before the MegaBus arrived. For a new bus line (new to us) it is doing well. The bus was packed. After some time (30 minutes late) it left for Memphis and points north (like Chicago). I arrived back in Searcy about 7:30pm. The entire trip and been some adventure. Now its over. I am parked at a friend’s house and consider this my “winter” location – bed and all.

Since Saturday, the 10th until now I have been reintroducing my self to old friends and neighbors. Janet, my friend, has lived in Searcy for about 25 years. She has recently joined the workforce again even though she is in her 70s. Her oldest daughter has come home for an extended stay.She is sleeping on the couch She is looking for work. Also, she has a female friend who will be staying with her for some time.She is staying in the second bedroom. She is on disability. I am glad I have my own sleeping quarters. Both Lue (daughter) and Teresa (friend) have been helping me work some on the RV

Tomorrow, I will have been 3 weeks and 1 day since i left Wisconsin. Today the last few days we have been working on the curtains for the bedroom/living room/dining room windows. Tomorrow we hope to finish the shelves that go over the beds. We may even get tome wiring for the lights over the beds done. hope, hope.

This should catch you up on the news about the Grand Maverick. More later. GM


Public school started on Sept 2 this year. By Wisconsin law school must not start earlier than the day after Labor Day. Now my main helpers are no longer available. They were great for unloading and loading the plywood. They also stained and varnished the wood which now looks spectacular. This part of the build is complete.

Yesterday we had an abundance of sun rays. This gave me an opportunity to pull out the wood pieces for the bed. We had disassembled the beds for storage. Now it was time to check them out and reassemble them. I am making twin beds to be located at the back of the van/RV. This room will become a living room/dining room/bedroom. Lap seat belts (6) are to be installed so that six friends can also make trips with me Windows have already been installed near the head of the beds. I am sure the doggies will love those.

The foundation layer of the bed is 22″ wide with legs that are screwed to the floor and the back into the wall. The sliding layer fits on top of the foundation and is 24″ wide. Its legs have wheels on them. When it is extended with the six-inch extenders it makes a 30″ bed. This does not make a very large bed. However, it is fine for my doggies and me. I suppose, if one wanted, the bed sides could slide closer together to make a 60″ bed. This would eliminate the 12″ space between the sides which I use for a bathroom trip in the middle of the night. For some this would be a difficult choice.. either a larger bed or a trip space. Oh, well. that’s life.

More later. Grand Maverick

Geese on the wing

Several times this week I have heard geese flying south. With all the trees around the yard it made it hard to see them however, they were loud enough that there was no doubt that it was geese. Then there was a small gap in the trees, and sure enough, there they were, flying in their V shape.

For the build, we have finished the sheets of plywood. The next step in to make some patterns for the cuts. ALso, to re-shape the beds. It may take some time but it will keep the legs from moving.

It sound like the boys are about finished cooking supper, so I must go. More later. Grand Maverick.

Sunny again today

This makes two days in a row that the sun is shinning. However, the forecast is for rain along about 3:00pm. This gives us a few hours to put on poly and to have it dry and the sheets put up before it rains.

The front yard is covered with tables and chairs we are using for platforms for the sheets of plywood. The yard is large with lots of trees all around so that we do not look terrible from the street. We are more than half through with this part of the build. Wheeeee,,,

More later Grand Maverick

Sunny today

It has been raining (or threatening to rain) almost everyday for at least two weeks. Finally, we have had two days in a row that the sun has shown his face.

Joel, Zeke and I have put several coats of either stain or poly on the 1/4″ plywood. It is looking very nice. Today we finished the 4 sheets of Pickeled Oak (white wash). We gave them one coat of Pickeled Oak and two coats of poly. Now all 20 sheets have at least one coat on them. Tomorrow it is supposed to rain again so we probably will not get to work on the wood.

The “spa” has arrived. That is what the maker calls the hand-held shower head. Also, today the faucets have come. And tonight I ordered the 2.8 gallon water heater. It should fit nicely on the shelf behind the stool.

This is going to be a cute “doll house” when I get it finished. More later. Grand Maverick

Starting again one more time

I have been here in Wisconsin for about two months now. During this time my advisors have discussed all the possibilities about every aspect of living in a RV which started out life as a very large cargo van. So now, gone is the ugly paneling, gone is the Double Bubble wrap. Instead, I have 2″ of blown on foam on all the walls, ceiling, and undercarriage {R-12}. Three of my grandsons are busy on sunny days staining the 1/4″ and 3/8″ birch plywood for the walls and ceiling. The bathroom and kitchen will have FPVC waterproof plastic sheets. I estimate that it will take 16 sheets of birch plywood for walls and ceiling. My grandsons think that the wood came from north Wisconsin. We are using natural stain for the walls and “Pickled Oak” (white) for the ceiling. Today we are just short of being half way through this process. The bath and kitchen will have FPVC plastic because it is water proof as well as pretty.

On rainy days I have been shopping for the things that go into a house… shower, lav, sink, toilet, tanks etc, etc. Most of these items should be delivered to my address sometime next week if not before.

My son knows a wonderful carpenter who will put this thing together. I am told that he does wonderful work. I am hoping to get it mostly finished by Monroe & Green County’s “Chees Daze” which is complete with parade.

I am planning on blogging more ofter in order to keep you informed. More later.

First Flight

The doggies and I are now living in Wisconsin. This is a rather large house. It’s driveway can park about 8 to 10 cars. Jacob, Buster and I were just returning for a walk (read run) down the street and were resting at the end of the drive way. I spotted a female robin bird slowly hopping across the drive way. She had food in her mouth and was chirping slowly as she hopped. I expected her to see the dogs and immediately fly away but she did not. She just kept her slow hop. Then she flew up onto the light line. Almost immediately, a colorful male robin bird fly into a low hanging tree limb. He also had food in his mouth and was slowly chirping. Then in the upper branches of the blue tree appeared the smallest little bird. It was only about one and a half inches long. Daddy looked at him and continued chirping. Junior did not move for several moments. Then he slowly straightened himself up and flew. He flew slowly for about a minute and then fast over to Dad.
I know that Dad was chirping, “Come on, Junior, you can do it. You can do it.”

This is the first time I ever saw bird parents encourage a fledging on his/her first flight.

AWESOME. More later from the wonderful weather in WI. Grand Maverick